Within seconds of speaking with Andy Finn, it’s evident he has a passion for learning, as well as teaching others. He is a walking example of pursuing every opportunity to learn something new because he strongly believes that, “learning is what life is all about.” Joining the U.S. Navy immediately after high school, Andy took full advantage of the abundance of educational opportunities provided to him, fueling his desire to continually learn more, and earning several U.S. Navy credentials in the process.
After getting married and starting a family, Andy decided it was time for a career that would not keep him deployed overseas for long periods of time. His experiences with nuclear training in the U.S. Navy led him to a career at the R.E. Ginna nuclear power plant, which kept him closer to home. It also provided him the opportunity to accomplish his goal of attaining his Bachelor’s degree: “It’s what I set out to get – I wanted my Bachelor’s degree and I wanted to be an engineer.” The online EPCE-sponsored Bachelor of Science in Nuclear Engineering Technology program through Excelsior College enabled him to do just that. Andy was also able to utilize his GI Bill to finance his educational pursuit.
He found that between long hours during plant outages, and balancing a growing family of five young children, the flexibility of the online format of the program was essential to completing his Bachelor’s degree. “If it wasn’t for online education, I would not have been able to earn my Bachelor’s degree with my hectic lifestyle and need to work simultaneously to be able to provide for my family.” Andy completed his degree in July of 2013.
He shares his passion with his students as a Senior Technical Instructor at the R.E. Ginna nuclear generating station operated by Constellation Energy Nuclear Group. “What I have learned in my online courses has helped me to better relate as an instructor to other topics and to drive home to my students how valuable continuing education is.”